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Q: Do I need to be vaccinated and/or boosted from COVID-19 to attend the program?
A: No. Effective October 25, 2023, A.C.T. no longer requires vaccination as a condition of employment or to participate in A.C.T. programs. A.C.T. reserves the right to update this policy at any time.  

Q: What safety protocols are in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19?
A: A.C.T. takes compliance with health and safety requirements very seriously and expects all employees to abide by all A.C.T. health and safety guidelines. In light of the California and San Francisco state of emergency ending February 28, 2023 and the federal end of the national emergency and public health emergency on May 11, we are adjusting our policies to be closer aligned with the current guidance. Masks will be required for all Employees, Students, Independent Contractors, Trustees, Volunteers and Vendors when CDC COVID-19 community levels in San Francisco are medium or high. Masks will be welcome but not required when CDC COVID-19 Community levels in San Francisco are low. We ask that all A.C.T. community members contribute to our collective safety by following all protocols and taking steps to reduce the risk of infection.

Q: What happens if I test positive COVID-19 while enrolled as a student in the STC?  
A: Students who test positive for COVID-19 must be excluded from the in-person classroom for at least 5 days after start of symptoms or after date of first positive test if no symptoms. Isolation can end and students may return to the classroom after day 5 if symptoms are not present or are mild and resolving; the student is fever-free for 24 hours without the use of a fever-reducing medication; AND the student has a negative COVID-19 test. If a student has a fever, isolation must continue and the student may not return to the classroom until 24 hours after the fever resolves. Students can remove mask after 5-day isolation if they have two negative tests that are at least one day apart. 

Q: Can international students apply?
No. Currently, we are not issuing I-20s for the program.

Q: Do I need to have any experience in order to enter the program?
A: Yes. We accept students at varying levels of development, but you must have some acting experience in classes and/or productions.

Q: What do I need to include in my application?
A: The following materials should be submitted with your application: completed on-line application form, current resume listing previous training and experience, one full-face snapshot or 8 x 10 headshot, contact information for your recommender, and an essay (no longer than one typewritten page) describing why you want to be an actor and your personal artistic goals.

Q: Can I submit my application materials separately, or do I need to submit all of it at the same time?
A: All materials and information must be submitted at the same time. You will be able to save information online until you choose to submit your application. Our online application will ask you to provide the contact information for your recommender, including name, phone number and email address. Upon submission of your application, your recommender will be emailed instructions on how to submit their letter. 

Q: What should my resume include? Should it list non-theater experience?
A: Your resume should list all theater work. This can include acting classes, voice lessons, seminars, university productions, community productions, and/or professional productions.

Q: I have obtained more than two letters of recommendation. Should I upload all of them?
A: No. Please include only the one letter we have requested.

Q: Is there an age requirement?
A: The STC accepts applicants who have graduated from high school and are age 18 or older at the start of the program. Students who still in high school should refer to A.C.T.'s Young Conservatory.

Q: I submitted in my application but haven't heard anything. Should I call the office?
A: Please wait at least two weeks after your application's estimated arrival date to call the office.

Q: What sort of monologue should I audition with? How long should my piece be?
A: You may use a modern/contemporary monologue from any play written from the mid-19th century to the present day, or a classical monologue in verse or prose—Shakespeare and other 16/17th century playwrights are reliable resources. The most important thing about your monologue is that it should help reveal who you are! Choose material you feel passionate about, that reveals something personal about you, and where something is at stake for the character. Your monologue should be no longer than two minutes. 

Q: What are the program's hours?
A: Classes meet Monday–Friday, 9 a.m.–6 p.m. Evenings and weekends are free. Please note: Arranging rehearsal time outside of regularly scheduled class hours is essential to successfully completing the STC.

Q: What is the daily class schedule?
A: Typically, a student will attend a variety of classes on any given day and throughout the course of the week, including Acting, Movement, Voice, Speech and the Actor, Improvisation, Clowning, Text, Audition Technique, and Conservatory Hours (talkbacks with prominent actors, directors, and others working in the industry). Acting classes last between two to four hours; other classes last two hours. The day may include one thirty-minute break and a one-hour lunch break. Students will find it necessary to schedule rehearsal time outside of class in order to work on scenes, monologues, etc. Total in-class time per week is approximately 32 hours.

Q: Are fee waivers available to cover my application fee?
A: Unfortunately, we do not offer fee waivers. Each applicant must pay the application fee. There are no exceptions.

Q: Does the STC provide housing for students?
A: A.C.T does not find housing for students. Apartments, rooms, and residence clubs are located within walking distance of the A.C.T. studios in downtown San Francisco. Other housing is available a short bus ride away, and San Francisco has an excellent public transportation system. We recommend that applicants use various online options to explore these possibilities. Our Student Handbook, sent to applicants upon acceptance to the program, includes more extensive information and suggestions.

Q: What kind of financial aid is available for the STC?
A: You can apply for either the STC scholarship or a private loan.

Q: Can I apply for a federal Pell grant or a Stafford loan?
A: No. The length of the STC does not qualify for these federal financial aid programs.

Q: Is there a separate application for financial aid?
A: Students interested in financial aid must complete STC Financial Aid Form and the regular STC application by the financial aid deadline. There are no other required forms. If you are accepted into the program, you will then be considered for financial aid.

Q: What is the deadline for applying for the STC scholarship?
A: The deadline for applying for the STC scholarship is Friday, April 12, 2024.

Q: How do I apply for a private (educational) loan?
A: Contact the conservatory administration office for information on researching private (educational) loans.

Q: Does A.C.T. offer student housing?
A: All students are responsible for finding and arranging their own housing for the duration of the program.

Q: What is the Withdrawal process for the STC?
A: Notification of withdrawal from the program must be made in writing by email to the Director of the Conservatory at pjkuo@act-sf.org. Verbal notification, whether in person or by voicemail, is not accepted. A.C.T. will confirm notification in writing. Upon receipt of A.C.T.'s confirmation, your withdrawal will become official.

Q: After my withdrawal from the STC becomes official, will I get a refund?
A: Refunds on tuition and other fees are detailed below:

Withdrawal before the commencement of classes: 100% refund of tuition paid, less the nonrefundable processing fee ($300). Withdrawal during the first week of classes: 60% refund of tuition paid, less the nonrefundable processing fee ($300) and the nonrefundable library fee ($25). Withdrawal during the second week of classes: 50% refund of tuition paid, less the nonrefundable processing fee ($300) and the nonrefundable library fee ($25). Withdrawal after the Friday of the second week of classes: no refund.

Q: I was a student while A.C.T. had its WASC accreditation, am I able to receive a transcript?

A: Yes. If you were a student prior to May 2022, we are still able to provide a transcript with course credit during your time in the Summer Training Congress. Please go to our transcript page for more information.

Q: Does A.C.T. offer other actor training programs?
A: Yes.

From acting and improvisation to musical theater and monologues, adult classes are also available throughout the year in Studio A.C.T.

A.C.T. also introduces actors at the start of their training to an active, ongoing engagement with the eclectic and energetic arts community of the Bay Area through our San Francisco Semester, a 15-week study away program for undergraduates. Embark on a 15-week theatrical and cultural immersion—a rich academic curriculum that will lead you to cultural destinations throughout the city and the bay.

Still have more questions?

If you still have questions after reading the FAQ and the other application materials, email conservatory@act-sf.org.